Budget delay - a chance to get the tax landscape right? - Boodle Hatfield

Your lawyers since 1722

24 Sep 2020

Budget delay – a chance to get the tax landscape right?

Written by

2 min read

The postponement of the Budget is yet another peculiarity of 2020 fostered by Covid 19. Not a few people had forecast that the long heralded removal of certain tax reliefs would finally come to pass this autumn as a way for the government to fund all the various emergency financial measures put in place earlier in the year: in the private wealth industry, we had seen some individuals bring forward their succession planning in anticipation.

The government may very well consider that it can ill afford to spend time thinking of creative solutions for raising income (nor more difficult headlines) now that it is finding further calls for funding from all sectors of the economy to continue to address a pandemic that was expected to be better controlled by now. However, is the government simply kicking the can down the road and will the Budget be postponed again next year, if no vaccine has been found by then and the picture remains as grim as at present?

Ultimately, at some stage, the nettle is going to have to be grasped. The country is unlikely to be kidding itself that this is a permanent reprieve, but, if it buys the government more time to ensure that any changes that it brings in are well thought through, well drafted and fair, so much the better.

Typically, the government outlines the state of the country's finances in the Budget and, crucially, proposes tax changes. But any such decisions will now be put on hold until next year. Instead, the government will reveal how much each department is allowed to spend.

Written by